Friday, June 16, 2017

47 - A Paralyzed Young Man

   
He saw the Spirit of God descending like a dove and lighting upon Him. Mat 3:16.  This statement may well be the key to defining the ministry of Christ. 

   And getting into the boat, He crossed over and went into His own city. Mat. 9:1 


   And He entered again into Capernaum after some days, and it was heard that He was in a certain house. 
   And immediately many were gathered together, so that there was no longer any room, not even near the door. And He was speaking the word to them. 
   And they came to Him, bringing a paralytic being carried by four men.
   And not being able to get near Him because of the crowd, they removed the tiles from the roof where He was, and having dug through they let down the bed on which the paralytic was lying. 

   And Jesus, seeing their faith, He said to the paralytic, "Child, your sins have been forgiven you." 
   And some of the scribes were sitting there and reasoning in their hearts,
  Why does this Man speak blasphemies like this? Who is able to forgive sins except God alone?" 

   And immediately, when Jesus recognized in His spirit that they were reasoning thus among themselves, He said to them, "Why are you reasoning these things in your hearts? 

   Which is easier, to say to the paralytic, 'Your sins have been forgiven,' or to say, 'Arise, take up your bed and walk'? 

    But in order that you may know that the Son of Man has authority on the earth to forgive sins"--He said to the paralytic, 
   “I say to you, arise, and take up your bed, and go to your house."
   And immediately he arose, and taking his bed, he went out before them all, so that all were amazed and glorified God, saying, "We never saw anything like this!" Mark 2:1-12

Getting Medical Attention 


As was said earlier, not all the synoptic gospels have the stories arranged in the same order.  This is just the same as any modern storytellers will not always repeat all their stories in the same order.  This is not a problem while studying the Gospels except that it can become confusing when trying to keep the continuity going.

According to the Gospel of Matthew Christ had just cast out demons in the country of the Gadarenes but the people there did not want Christ to stay in their area so He getting into the boat, He crossed over and went into His own city. Mat. 9:1.  We recall that when Jesus left His home, in Nazareth He moved into Capernaum; this is where we find Him now, in  His own city.

It was in Capernaum that Christ had cast a demon out of a man in the synagogue.  The fame of that act must have spread all over town and the countryside. A few days after Christ returned to His home town many were gathered together, (they came to hear Him preach) so that there was no longer any room, not even near the door. And He was speaking the word to them. 

After the house had become totally crowded four men brought a paralysed man to be healed by Christ.  Because they could not get through the crowd, they hoisted the man, sleeping mat and all, onto the roof.

Here is one theory: Now, in these roofs, there was a door, ... "the door of the roofs"; now when they had brought up the sick man to the roof of the house, by a ladder fastened on the outside, which was common; they took up this door, and let him down in his bed into the room where Jesus was: and because they wrenched the roof door open with violence, therefore it is said, ... and when they had broken it up, they let down the bed wherein the sick of the palsy lay. Gill

Dr Luke disagrees with Mr Gill.  He writes, And not finding a way by which they might bring him in through the crowd, going up on the housetop, they let him down through the tiles with his cot into the midst, before Jesus. Luke 5:19 

Here is a different theory: Because of the crowd four men bearing a litter might well despair about entering the house.  But with palsied paralysis at stake, they would not be repulsed. They gained the roof by an outer staircase.  Then they uncovered and broke up the roof, by which strong phrases St. Mark means that they first lifted the tiles which lay in a bed of mortar or mud, broke through this, and then tore up the poles and light rafters by which all this covering was supported. Then they lowered the sick man upon his pallet, in front of the Master as He taught. Expositors Bible Commentary

And Jesus, seeing their faith, He said to the paralytic, "Child, your sins have been forgiven you." Mark 2:5.   The argument is made that since Christ forgave the patient his sins Christ must be divine because Who is able to forgive sins except God alone?"  The Jews and the "church" both believe that to be true. 

the Son of Man has authority on the earth to forgive sins.   This authority was given to Christ by the Father.  For as the Father has life in Himself, so He ... has given Him (Christ) authority to execute judgment. John 5:26-27.   

We must be careful that we do not read the word judgment as condemnation.  The Greek word is kree'-sis (Subjectively or objectively, for or against); by extension a tribunal; by implication justice. Strong G2920.  It means "a fair judgment" - leading to punishment or forgiveness.  In this case, Christ decided to forgive; the choice was His.

Those who use this story to validate the divinity of Christ seem to overlook this one important point.  The authority was given to Christ by The Father, therefore, the Father must be superior to the Son and so Christ cannot be an equal with God; or as the church loves to say, Christ is God of very God.  If the two were equal one would not be giving authority to the other!

Then Christ said, Just to prove to you teachers of the Law that I have the authority to forgive sins I will heal this paralytic.  And He did.